OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Tyler Chadwick homered and doubled, Alex Cunningham pitched 6 1/3 solid innings, and surprising Coastal Carolina reached the College World Series finals with a 7-5 victory over TCU on Saturday night.
The Chanticleers (53-17) of the Big South Conference will play Arizona in a best-of-three series starting Monday, trying to win the national championship in their first appearance at the CWS.
Chadwick’s blast over the right-center wall opened the scoring, and the Chanticleers added two runs in the third and four in the fourth. They had only three baserunners over the last four innings, and TCU pulled within two runs with one out in the ninth. But Michael Landestoy hit into his third double play of the game to end it.
Alex Cunningham (10-4) scattered eight hits and allowed four runs before turning the game over to Bobby Holmes.
Jared Janczak (7-4), the first of four TCU pitchers, last three innings and took the loss for the Horned Frogs (49-18).
The Chanticleers from Conway, South Carolina, have been playing baseball since 1975 and are no strangers to the NCAA Tournament. They’ve been in it 15 times since 1991 and made the super regionals twice before this year.
Their path to their first CWS finals was adventurous.
In regionals, an 8-1 loss to host North Carolina State forced a second final, and the Chanticleers were down 5-3 in the top of the ninth of that game when rain suspended play with Coastal Carolina having one out and the bases loaded. The Chanticleers came back the next day and rallied for four runs to win 7-5.
Then it was on to a super regional at LSU, where they squandered a lead before Michael Paez’s tiebreaking single in the bottom of the ninth produced a walk-off victory in the clinching game.
In Omaha, Coastal Carolina lost to TCU in its second game, meaning the Chanticleers had to win three straight to go to the finals. The Chanticleers knocked off Texas Tech on Thursday and TCU on Friday before beating the Frogs again.